Itzhak Perlman

Beethoven, Mendelssohn: Violin Concertos

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Originally recorded in 1981, digitally remastered in 1988, and reissued here in 2010, Perlman's recording of the Beethoven Violin Concerto with Carlo Maria Giulini and the Philharmonia Orchestra needs little introduction for collectors. For listeners seeking their first recording of this seminal work, Perlman and Giulini offer one of the most solid, reliable readings of the concerto available. Long before Perlman turned from violin playing toward conducting, the high level of playing --technical precision, musical refinement, adherence to the score, sensitive musical decisions, and stunning dynamics -- were his norm. More than just Perlman's own connection with the music, this recording offers a pleasingly symbiotic relationship between soloist and orchestra that elevates Beethoven's sole concerto for the instrument to a higher level. EMI also includes a 1973 recording of the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E minor with the London Symphony Orchestra and André Previn. Here again, Perlman's playing is exemplary, both in technique and musicianship. The first movement gets off to a somewhat slow start, but the pace quickly picks up and the remainder of the movement is taken at its usual passionate, forward-moving tempo. The finale is highly spirited and the nimble interplay between the violin and winds is tossed off with exciting precision. EMI's sound quality throughout is clear and well-balanced.

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